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Full text of "Alexander von Humboldt"

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78                                 LIFE  OF
for  science,   named   Montnfor,*   who    accompanied.
hirn on this journey., and on the  23rd June,, 1802, ho
even ascended the Chimborazo, where hu climbed to
a height of 8036 toises, an elevation  to which    no
man before Hiimboldt hud ascended.    Nature seeing
indeed, most unwillingly to allow mortals to penetrates
Into her mysterious depthB, or ascend her mysterious
altitudes;  above  she  threatens thorn, with the fatal
'Consequences of a rariiied uubroatliablo atmosphere,
below with suffocation In a hot condensation of air.   i >w
the point of Ohimborazo which Htmiboltlt reached, the
blood flowed fromhiseycs, hlsllp^a«nd his pfiuuH, breath-
ing became difficult, and the thermometer stood still t
Arrived  nt   Quito,   Ifumboldt  received   a  1 utter,
which communicated to him that Captain, Bivudm had
sailed to New Zealand., and mimed oa«rAvav<i, round
the Cape of Good Hope*.    The plan  of a junction
with Baudin, and the, in that case, practicable journey
to Mexico  and the Phili],)pine Islands, which ho had
cherished  for  thirteen  months,   was  now  yiidtlcinly
frustrated.     But he  was already  accustomed,   from
former times, to such disappointments of long che-
rished projects, that he did not lose courage, but, de-
pending on his own resources., resolved not to lowo sight
of his purpose. He determined to sail from Quito to the
Amazon stream,  and to arrive In Lima, In time to
enable him to observe the passage of the planet Mer-
cury across the sun's di«sk.
under indescribable difficulties., Humboldt and Ins
faithful companion Bonpland reached Loxa, on a path
leading through the snowfields of Assuay aaid Uuowoa,
which made the transport of the scientific Iiistrnmonts,
and the extensive collection., more troublesome. In
the woods here, they examined the various speeiea of
the China-tree, then wandered eastward over the
* Bon Carlos Montufor fell a victim to political partiBattHlnp ia
1811.                                                                                             *
f On the 16th December, 1883,, Bon«smgm:ilt> the only olio who
has since ascended tins mountain, reached/ not tlio gnLUHttuit; but w
point 400 foet Jtig'her than Humboldt could vouturc on.